PM Modi is speaking in the Rajya Sabha on Wednesday, replying to thanks motion on President's Address to the Parliament. His primary focus in the initial parts of the speech is about demonetization.
Modi said, " I can't deny that inconvenience was a bad thing, that it caused convenience, and that's why the fight against black money isn't political. It's not to oppose anyone, it's not the cause to fight against political. it's our duty to fight against black money. It's also true that the parallel economy is hurting the poor the most. It takes away things from the poor. It's not like no one tried before. The endgame is to fight black money. We can't shove it under the carpet. Jaali note, aankre is just about jaali note reaching banks, it never reached banks before and terrorists, naxalist, use the black notes."
PM says, " A lot of people are shouting that RS 2000 was found with terrorists, bank lootne ka prayas hua happened in Jammu and Kashmir. Because counterfeit notes run their industry. But the terrorists with old notes shows that they are finding it hard. We can't stop till it becomes hard for the dishonest. And for that the ultimate gain will help the honest and that's our belief. Years ago Wancho committee asked Indira Gandhi to do demonetization, but she refused to do so fearing backlash. "
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PM claims that Indian politicians are out of touch with reality. They aren't aware how big the support for demonetization is across the ranks and files of the country. In enemy states, counterfeit notes forced people to commit suicide. 700 maoists surrendered in 30-40 days. between November and december.
PM takes jibe at Manmohan Singh and stops short of saying that whatever Manmohan Singh said about demonetization in Parliament was dictated to him by someone else. He says Manmohan Singh has been intrinsically linked to fate of India's economy for more than three decades. He says Manmohan Singh has mastered the art of bathing in the bathroom wearing a raincoat. Congress leaders are visibly upset. Modi's exact quote was, " Bathroom mein raincoat pehne ka nahanna doctor saab jante hia."
PM is now justifying his comment reminding the house how Manmohan Singh stated about organised loot in RS. Modi says that he is perfectly capable of paying back in their own coin. Modi alleges Congress of still not been able to reconcile with their defeat.
The entire opposition has walked out protesting PM Modi's dig at Manmohan Singh. PM chides them by saying they should have the guts to hear, when they attack politically.
PM is now giving backdrop about why Wanchu Commission report was not implemented by the Indira Gandhi government. He said: "It’s true that regular people are angry, yet after so many difficulties, there was not a single riot due to demonetization. And we should present this to the entire nation. The world should know how the people of India came together."
The PM urged Left parties to support the move, saying it was in their character. He said: "People who are opposing demonetization will understand why it's such a great move."
He added: "People were giving a report card of 70 years of governance of which, I have only contributed only two years."
PM Modi added, that let us start our move towards a digital India from big cities like Delhi and Kolkata.
He added: "Cashless doesn't mean we will go completely cashless. If we could adopt electronic voting, from ballot voting. We have to keep moving forward. There are various countries like Korea where they have incentive schemes. The Bhim App doesn't cost a single money, no commission and that's why we are moving towards paperless banking."
Giving an example of Railways or electricity bills, he points out how people use their phones to book tickets or pay their bills and said along with Jan Dhan accounts, the government had given Rupay Cards to 21 crore people.
He further said: "Thanks to direct benefit schemes, there has been a stop on people looting the country and we should work hard to increase digital payments. We are moving fast to increase POS machines. We are promoting e-wallets, digital payment, etc. And we are working hard, to increase the number of people using the BHIM app."
Speaking about the criticism against RBI and Governor Urjit Patel, he urged politicians not to attack institutions. He said: "The RBI has a huge role to pay and those who attack RBI need to stop." Pointing out former governor Dr Subbarao's criticism of P Chidambaram, PM Modi accused the former FM of overstepping his bounds and claimed that no one raised a ruckus about it.
The PM pointed out that government had cut down red-tape, and it was much easier to get a passport or start a company now.
Speaking about the Swacch Bharat initiate he said: "None of us want to live in a dirty place. I want to thank the media for supporting the campaign. Normally, the media is negative but the media has helped us during this campaign. Even Mahatma Gandhi was for this, would you have spoken against him also? These are not things to joke about, hygiene can't be something we joke about."
Touching upon women's safety he said: "For women's safety, we've also started help-lines and more women are joining the police."